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National firm joins forces with corporate boutique

A leading Australian firm has teamed up with a corporate boutique, which will boost its partner numbers by five and its staff by 20 over the next few months.

user iconNaomi Neilson 28 October 2021 Big Law
National firm joins forces with corporate boutique
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Boutique firm Clarendon Lawyers partners and staff will be absorbed into Mills Oakley over the coming months, solidifying their plan to join forces.

Mills Oakley said the change comes at a time of strength for the M&A market and will allow the firm to bolster its corporate practice in Melbourne with the boutique team. Meanwhile, Clarendon’s staff and clients can now access opportunities and services found only in a full service, national commercial firm.


Mills Oakley CEO John Nerurker said: “Cultural alignment is often elusive, but it was clear from the very outset of our talks that our two firms share a genuine sense of common purpose. We have known and respected each other for many years, and it is wonderful to see that relationship come to fruition.”

The partners joining Mills Oakley are Clarendon’s managing director Tony Symons and directors Nick Manuell, David Bryant, Brendan Sheehan and Andrew Chan.

Commenting on the move, Mr Symons said: “At Clarendon, we are proudly independent, and until now, we have been resistant to any movement, but as our deal size has matured, we recognise the necessity to expand our offering with a full-service firm. Alignment was key to evaluating the right partner, and we have found that in Mills Oakley, a dynamic full-service national firm with boutique soul.”

Mr Symons added he is proud of the “amazing contributions” made by Clarendon’s team, which he said is recognised as “one of the strongest” in the market.

“Additionally, I am grateful for all our fantastic clients and partners that have loyally supported us, and we look forward to building on these relationships under the Mills Oakley banner.”